The findings of foreign research show that tracking does not result in better overall student results but leads to greater differ-ences in achievement of students in high and low tracks. Students in higher tracks usually achieve better results than they would have achieved in heterogeneous settings. Just the opposite is true for students in lower tracks. Students are not distributed into the tracks rightly. Students with low socio-economic status are overrepresented in lower tracks regardless of their results. The edducational environment in the higher and lower tracks is not equal. Higher tracks have better teachers and better conditions.
Differentiation in the Czech education system is high and selection occurs at a very young age. Data shows that in recent years differentiation has been increasing still further. Basic schools have been reacting to the demographic decline by creating various selective tracks, e.g. special classes for talented students. More and more often children take entrance examinations at entry to compulsory educa-tion. Data from the international achievement surveys OECD PISA and IEA TIMSS show that increasing differentiation of educational paths has not yet influenced variation in students results at the primary level. At the lower and upper secondary level, however, there is a significant increase in differences among individual students, schools and tracks. While the results of students in multi-year gymnasia are stable the results of basic school students ate deterioriating to a statistically significant degree. Ratio of students that do not achieve a minimal level of reading literacy increases. Higher and lower tracks increasingly differ in educational conditions and school climate.
Students with low socio-economical status whose parents are not able to help them to choose the best educational path and to help them with their studies, are suffering disproportionately.